The Shiv Sena will use its local network of trained cadres of the Sthaniya Lokadhikaar Samiti (SLS) to monitor and organise the election process during the coming Assembly elections.
The cadre has been given intensive training in handling election affairs like monitoring booths, use of electronic voting machines and all such core election work.
Senior party leader Gajanan Kirtikar has been grooming his office-bearers to learn all the tricks of the game.
Kirtikar (63), the party’s Lok Sabha candidate in Mumbai North-West, has been one of the founders of this well-oiled organisation. A seasoned politician who quit a bank job to enter full-time politics, Kirtikar has been an MLA from Malad for four consecutive terms from 1990 onwards.
“The strength of this network is it is spread in a wide range of organisations from MTNL to aviation companies and covers all class of public — mass and class. This will help the Sena gain over other parties. It can exactly gauge the mood of the public and help party get a trend,” a senior party leader said.
The SLS is an employment cell of the Shiv Sena and has been providing employment opportunities to lakhs of youth. Its name conveys its purpose, and the samiti has continued to effectively articulate the demand that 80 per cent of all jobs in government, banks and the corporate sector be given to Maharashtrians.
The SLS has moved into banks, insurance companies, the ONGC, Air India, Indian Airlines, a number of shipping companies, the Mazgaon dock and the Naval dock. The SLS has also initiated a number of training courses to prepare Maharashtrian candidates for job-related examinations and interviews.